Hard to believe it, but we’ve almost reached the end of this year’s first quarter– making this the perfect timing to review your strategic marketing efforts.
Earlier this year we talked about the importance of SMART goal setting for the new business year. So now that you have those goals set, it’s a good time to review your progress toward attaining those goals and ensure you’re on track.
Marketing Audit vs. Marketing Review
A well-defined and consistent review process can help you scale your small business and more effectively reach your goals. You may hear the terms marketing audit and marketing review be used interchangeably, but they are in fact, distinctly different.
- A marketing review generally refers to a simplified overview of your efforts that assesses where you are in relation to your goals. This is often a clear, uncomplicated way of looking at your progress over a determined amount of time — such as on a quarterly basis.
- A marketing audit on the other hand is normally much more extensive. It offers highly in-depth data and information about your strategy, process, and previous implementation. Planning a more intensive audit once a year is a great way to reflect on very extensive data and see your impact over the course of the whole year. You can often review seasonal and monthly trends and dive deeper into your projected growth for the next year.
The key to reviewing your marketing efforts is to — simply put — be proactive. By conducting quarterly reviews, you won’t run into the mistake of looking at a cost summary at the end of the year to only then realize your marketing strategies were a wasted investment. Scheduling regular reviews can help you realize the monetary impact of your strategy and adjust accordingly.
Your Quarterly Goal Review: Where to Start
Sometimes your goals may shift over the course of the year so it’s important to be able to identify those changes. The whole point of the review process is to embrace necessary change to set you on the right track while acknowledging small wins and understanding how they help you achieve your bigger goals.
Start off with these steps:
- Define the scope of the review to get more specified data that will help drive your decision-making. According to research from the Harvard Business Review, 31% of professional marketers say they face challenges from analyzing too much data, so make it easier on yourself by pulling only necessary summaries. Pulling too much data can create confusion and misguided direction.
- Measure your progress by analyzing your data. Are you on track? Falling behind? Are certain campaigns costing you more than others?
- Evaluate your results and create an action plan to address areas where your marketing may fall short, then refine your strategy.
Reviewing your marketing activity on a quarterly basis can help you understand if your tactics are giving you the desired results. You’ll get a clear idea of what you need to change or what you’re doing right.
At UpSwell, we are experts in marketing strategies for small business and are here to help you with reviewing your yearly goals and setting up the right campaigns to achieve them!